Carbohydrate
Tianna Ng, Block D

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About Carbohydrate:
Carbohydrate is an organic compound that consists only of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen and has double the amount of carbon and oxygen. Carbohydrates contain sugars, starches, cellulose and other compounds found in living organisms. Carbohydrates most basic form is simple sugars or monosaccharide. There are three other chemical groupings: disaccharides, oligosaccharides and polysaccharides. Simple sugars can be combined into other carbohydrates for form more complex carbohydrates. Humans break down carbohydrates during the process of metabolism to release energy. Humans get carbohydrates from eating foods that contain it. Most carbohydrates are produced by plants during photosynthesis. In food, the term carbohydrate means any food that is particularly rich in starch.

Monosaccharides:
Carbohydrates are made up of unites of sugar or saccharide. Simple sugars only contain one or two unites. When eaten, the simple sugar breaks down quickly and releases energy. Two most common monosaccharides are glucose and fructose. Monosaccharides are aldehydes or ketones with two or more hydroxyl groups. In living organisms, monosaccharides are a major source of fuel for metabolism.


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Fructose
Glucose

Disaccharides:
Disaccharides are made up of two joined monosacchairdes. The two most common disacchairdes are sucrose and lactose.
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Lactose
Sucrose


Oligosaccharides and Polysaccharides:
Oligosaccharides are made up of longer chains of monosaccharide. It usually contains between three to ten monosaccharide unites. Oligosaccharides are a common form of protein posttranslational modification.
Polysaccharides are made up of ten or more monosaccharide unites. It purpose in a living organisms is usually structure or storage related.


How it benefits us:
When we eat foods with carbohydrates in them, digestive enzymes in the mouth, stomach and intestine break it down into simple sugars and eventually glucose. Certain cell tissues need glucose from carbohydrates, which is a side effect of low-carb diets. The body converts glucose into energy which allows us to have more energy. When you don’t have enough carbohydrates in your body, your body takes the glucose stored as glycogen in fatty tissues and then the body with burn protein tissues from the muscles. The amount of available carbohydrate energy prevents the body from breaking down muscle tissue.

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Interesting fact:
Did you know that carbohydrates are imperative for muscle growth? Muscle is the body’s most abundant source of protein. In order to build muscles, you need more than protein in your diet. While protein is a primary building source for muscle, you need other nutrients to build muscle. Carbohydrates are important for muscle growth because it assist in insulin production. Proteins can’t be used for muscle building without insulin.

http://www.scientificpsychic.com/fitness/carbohydrates.html

http://www.visionlearning.com/library/module_viewer.php?mid=61
http://library.thinkquest.org/11960/nutrition/carbohydrates.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbohydrate
http://www.carbs-information.com/carbohydrates-benefits.htm